The international alternative and hip-hop communities are reeling this week, after it was announced that New Zealand-based musician, rapper and mentor Todd Williams (a.k.a. Louie Knuxx) passed away, aged 42. Williams rose to the attention of many of his Australian fans via collaborations and tours with the likes of Deez Nuts and The Amity Affliction, rapidly earning a place as a crowd favourite and habitual mosh starter.
Now, an opportunity for fans to give back has arisen, with a crowdsourcing campaign launched to provide much-needed financial assistance for Williams’ family. Reports confirmed that Williams passed in Melbourne last Friday (August 13th), and as such, funds raised in the Kickstarter campaign will go towards transporting him to family in Aotearoa, as well as the costs associated with the funeral.
At the time of writing, the crowdsourcing campaign has already smashed it’s initial goal, reaching more than $20,000 in donations within two hours. That being said, funds are still being raised to cover further costs.
“[Williams] used his own struggles growing up to transform the lives of so many people young and old,” the campaign reads. “If you were lucky enough to have known Todd you’ll never forget him. Todd gave so much of himself to everyone in his life. If you can spare any money it’d be greatly appreciated”
The impact Williams had on the alternative community is dwarfed when compared to his impact on society at large. In recent years, Williams had been devoted to his work as a mentor with South Auckland’s Nga Rangitahi Toa creative arts initiative, working directly with marginalised youths to help them realise their own musical talents.
Williams started making waves as an artist when he first joined the ranks of New Plymouth hip-hop outfit Dirtbag District, before joining the Young, Gifted and Broke collective.